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Tue 19th Dec 2017 - Propel Tuesday News Briefing

Story of the Day:

UK drives European branded coffee shop market expansion, Starbucks overtakes McCafe to become second-largest operator: The UK drove European expansion of the branded coffee shop market in 2017 as it added 643 outlets to reach an estimated 7,421 in total, according to the Project Café 2018 Europe report from Allegra World Coffee Portal. Starbucks was the fastest-growing operator for the second year running. It added 251 new stores in 2017 to reach 2,406 outlets, overtaking McCafe to become the second-largest operator in the market. With its Italian debut in 2018, starting with the opening of the Reserve roastery in Milan, Starbucks will be the first chain to have a presence in all 25 key European markets. Whitbread-owned Costa Coffee remained the largest chain in Europe, adding 243 stores in the past 12 months to bring its total to 2,755 outlets. The report showed the European branded coffee shop market grew by 6.4% in 2017 – the same as last year – to reach an estimated 22,714 outlets. The report revealed the fastest-growing markets in terms of outlet expansion in the past 12 months were the UK, Turkey and Russia. A total of 21 of the 25 European countries have seen expansion of their branded coffee shop market, with 18 of those displaying growth of 3% or higher. The “third wave” artisan scene is growing across Europe and is already established in the “more dynamic cities” in countries such as the UK, Russia, Nordic nations and the Netherlands. The report said successful branded chains were adapting to this influence, invigorating their brands with new in-store design, single-origin coffee and freshly prepared food offerings while markets yet to embrace the trend were starting to fall behind in terms of outlet growth. In the most advanced markets a new trend was emerging, dubbed the “fifth wave, the business of coffee”. This trend sees high-quality artisan chains adopt a more advanced set of business practices and higher standards of professionalism to deliver boutique concepts at scale. Allegra forecast market growth would continue at a steady rate, with key opportunities lying in countries where international chains are influencing the expansion of domestic brands. It said the future of the coffee shop market would be shaped by the continued increase in consumer participation and the desire for quality coffee anywhere and at any time. Allegra Group managing director Jeffrey Young said: “We are entering an exciting new era of leadership in the industry, one based on a culture of excellence. Addressing these rapidly changing market dynamics is a business imperative and leading chains will need to adapt or risk getting left behind.”

Industry News:

More than 350 booked for Restaurant Marketer & Innovator event series in January: More than 350 senior executives have now booked for Restaurant Marketer & Innovator, the most comprehensive marketing series the sector has seen. Propel will stage the two-day event in partnership with Think Hospitality on Wednesday, 17 January and Thursday, 18 January at One Moorgate Place in London. An array of marketers from agencies and early-stage, growing and rejuvenating brands will take to the stage to share their strategies and winning tactics. Companies and brands attending include Novus, Signature Pubs, Cafe Rouge, Wagamama, Brasserie Bar Co, Las Iguanas, YO! Sushi, Fuller’s, ASK Italian, Mitchells & Butlers, G1 Group, Costa Coffee, Ei Group, Jamie Oliver Restaurant Group, Brewhouse & Kitchen, Stonegate Pub Company, Be At One, Revolution Bars Group, Cabana, Thai Leisure Group, New World Trading Company, Pho, Maxwell’s Group, Gather & Gather, Oakman Inns and Restaurants, The Breakfast Club, The Coaching Inn Group, Gail’s Bakery, Gordon Ramsay Restaurants, K10, Giggling Squid, San Carlo Group, Ennismore, TLC Inns, Polpo, FrogPubs, The Real Eating Company, Claus Meyer Holding, VIP Pizza, 200 Degrees, Coppa Club, Snug Bars, Albion & East, Pint Shop, True North Brew Co, Darwin & Wallace, Chit Chat Chai, BabaBoom, Electric Star and Eat Poke. For full details of the two days, co-ordinated by James Hacon and Ann Elliott respectively, click here. Conference prices for two days are £525 plus VAT for operators and £795 plus VAT for suppliers. Companies buying two tickets will receive a third one free. A one-day rate of £345 plus VAT is available to operators only. For more information and to book, call Jo Charity on 01444 810304 or email or Anne Steele on 01444 817691 or

Lords to debate effectiveness of Licensing Act 2003: The House of Lords will debate the legislative scrutiny report on the Licensing Act 2003 that was published in April, together with the government response published last month. The report, by the House of Lords Licensing Act 2003 Committee, considered the effectiveness of the Act and changes that should be made 11 years after it came into force. The main recommendation was responsibility for licensing should be transferred from local authority licensing committees to planning committees. Other major recommendations included planning inspectors to hear appeals; more training for councillors before sitting on a licensing committee; changes to better regulate “pre-loading”; applying the Act to airports; better disabled access to licensed premises; a better balance of interests between licensed premises owners and neighbours; and evaluation of the Scottish minimum unit pricing scheme before applying it in England. Chairman of the committee Baroness McIntosh of Pickering: “The committee’s conclusion was the Act was fundamentally flawed. The government has accepted a number of our recommendations and promised to consider and consult on others. But it has rejected some of our more important recommendations. I welcome this opportunity to challenge ministers on this and to hear what they have to say.” The debate will start at 4.30pm on Wednesday (20 December) in the House of Lords. Baroness McIntosh of Pickering will start the debate, while Baroness Williams of Trafford will respond on behalf of the government.  

ALMR reiterates need for business rates reform as London mayor pledges to make cuts for hospitality businesses: The Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers (ALMR) has reiterated the need for the government to push ahead with the reform of business rates following London mayor Sadiq Khan’s pledge to make cuts for hospitality businesses. ALMR chief executive Kate Nicholls said: “We are extremely grateful the London mayor has recognised the critical issue of wholesale reform of the business rates system. The capital’s late-night bars, restaurants, live music and clubbing venues are rightly recognised as some of the most vibrant and progressive in the world and are a vital part of the sustainable hospitality sector. There have been some positive signals recently with London night tsar Amy Lamé acknowledging the value of the night-time economy in the capital and taking steps to protect and nurture it. Business rates rises are a clear threat to investment, growth and job creation in the sector and the government must act and push ahead with reform.”

New £20m aparthotel and restaurant scheme to be developed in Leeds: Leeds-based property and investment company Town Centre Securities is to develop a £20m aparthotel and restaurant scheme in the city. The company has been chosen by the city council for the project in George Street. Work is due to start on the development in the first quarter of 2019, with completion in 2020. It will be a partnership between Town Centre Securities and the council, with the local authority acquiring a 50% ownership of the completed development. The building will consist of a 117-bedroom aparthotel and nine ground-floor units for restaurants, bars, cafes, takeaways and other retailers. The aparthotel is due to feature 82 studios, 31 one-bedroom and four two-bedroom units. Town Centre Securities chairman and chief executive Edward Ziff said: “Leeds has seen an influx of visitors and businesses and we are delighted to have secured this scheme to deliver additional accommodation capacity in this sought-after location.”

Company News:

Marston’s executives see bonus reduced by remuneration committee ‘mindful of continued careful management of costs’: Marston’s executives saw their bonus award reduced because the remuneration committee was mindful of the “continuing careful management of costs”, the company’s annual report has revealed. Chief executive Ralph Findlay and chief financial and corporate development officer Andrew Andrea stood to earn a bonus of 22.65% of salary based on the company’s targets. However, the remuneration committee took the decision to reduce the level to 20%. The report showed Findlay saw his total remuneration fall to £803,303 for the year ending 30 September 2017, compared with £1,008,320 the previous year. This consisted of £542,000 salary, £17,403 benefits, £108,400 bonus and £135,500 pension. Meanwhile, Andrea’s total pay dropped to £522,903, compared with £617,698 the year before. This was made up of £363,000 salary, £14,703 benefits, £72,600 bonus and £72,600 pension. Both executives were awarded a 2% salary increase “in line with the average salary increases across the group”. The report also showed Peter Dalzell, who left his role as managing director of Inns and Taverns after a management restructure in September, received remuneration totalling £404,008, which included a statutory redundancy payment of £12,225. Remuneration committee chairman Catherine Glickman said: “Based on (the company’s) results, a bonus of 22.65% of salary would have been earned, although the committee exercised discretion to reduce the bonus awarded to Ralph Findlay and Andrew Andrea to 20% of salary being mindful of continuing our careful management of costs. This also applies to employees in the group bonus scheme, who will receive 20% of their individual bonus opportunity.”

Giggling Squid to ‘significantly’ step up expansion next year: Giggling Squid co-founder Andy Laurillard has told Propel the Thai restaurant group plans to “significantly” step up its expansion next year. The company, which operates 22 restaurants, has three sites already lined up for launch in early 2018 – in Bath, Beaconsfield and Chichester – and Laurillard, who founded the business with wife Pranee, said further sites were already in the pipeline. He said: “We opened four sites this year and I would expect us to significantly push that rate up next year. We’ve spent a lot of time getting the team right and now we’re ready to really go for it. We still have plenty of places we want to go and have a solid pipeline that will see us up to FY19. We’re now looking for sites to take us into 2019.” The company saw turnover for the year to 2 April 2017 increase 56% to £18.4m, with Ebitda up 50% to £2.1m. Laurillard said he expected revenue to rise between 25% and 40% in the current financial year. He said while a handful of sites benefited from delivery it was not a major part of the business and the company had no plans to launch its own service. He added: “We’ve done a lot of work to improve customer-service levels and added some new menu items and we’re seeing a bit more in terms of repeat visits.” Laurillard said current trading was “very good” and added: “We’re doing even better than last year. We’ve put a lot of effort into our Christmas menu, which is going very well. It’s all going in the right direction. Economically, we're not exposed to the London climate and most of our sites are in ‘well to do’ areas that seem to not be as badly hit.” Giggling Squid, which secured a £6.4m investment from the Business Growth Fund in 2015 to support its expansion plans, opened its first site in Brighton in 2009. 

YO! Sushi sees Heathrow T2 site become company’s first restaurant to take more than £100,000 in a week: YO! Sushi has seen its site at Heathrow T2 become the company’s first restaurant to take more than £100,000 in a week, Propel has learned. The site has broken two site records – most sales in a day by more than £2,000 and beating the busiest week by more than £16,000. The restaurant, which is based airside in the terminal and has 72 covers, opened in June 2014.

Wagamama opens its first restaurant in Oman: Wagamama has opened its first restaurant in Oman as part of its international expansion strategy. The 160-cover restaurant has launched at the Al-Qurum Complex in the capital, Muscat, and is the company’s 12th site to open in the Middle East in the past 13 years. The Omani market will be developed by franchise partner Bin Mirza International, the largest operator of international hospitality brands in Oman. The country has a growing population and developing tourist industry, providing opportunities for Wagamama to establish demand. Brian Johnston, managing director of Wagamama International, said: “The brand is proving very popular in Middle East markets. Our focus on freshly prepared food, unique and authentic Asian flavours and the relaxed atmosphere within the restaurants appeals strongly to our Middle Eastern guests. While adapting somewhat to local needs, we have replicated the minimalist decor, theatrical open kitchen, and fresh Japanese and Asian-influenced dishes that have powered our expansion into 23 countries.” Hani Mirza, partner and managing director of Bin Mirza International, added: “Bin Mirza International is dedicated to transforming the food scene locally with international brands that offer unique and high-quality food. Wagamama embodies our vision.” Wagamama’s Middle Eastern portfolio includes Saudi Arabia (three restaurants), United Arab Emirates (four with two further openings in early 2018), Bahrain (one with another opening late next year) and Qatar (two with two more in the final stages of preparation). The brand currently has 183 restaurants worldwide.

Bakery company Greenhalgh’s slips to pre-tax loss despite turnover passing £25m: Family-owned bakery company Greenhalgh’s has slipped to a pre-tax loss despite turnover passing the £25m mark. The company saw revenue increase to £25,085,000 for the year ending 31 January 2017, compared with £24,705,707 the previous year. It fell to a pre-tax loss of £370,970 compared with a profit of £574,548 the year before, according to accounts filed at Companies House. In their report accompanying the accounts, the directors stated: “The company closed the year with net current assets of £5.75m and shareholders’ funds of £16.34m which, in a volatile financial climate, the directors consider satisfactory. The company continues to seek suitable retail opportunities to expand its portfolio of shops. In 2015-16, significant capital expenditure was set aside for extending the main manufacturing site and ensuring our facilities complied with the latest environmental and hygiene regulations. In 2016-17, the company opened two further retail shops but leases were also signed on a further two. Funds were also set aside for significant investment in plant and machinery.” Greenhalgh’s, which was founded in 1957, has more than 60 stores and also serves the wholesale market. The company is headquartered in the Bolton suburb of Lostock and majority owned by Kathleen Smart.

Moody Burgers hits £150,000 crowdfunding target as it looks to expand across UK: Burger restaurant and delivery concept Moody Burgers has hit its £150,000 crowdfunding campaign as it seeks to expand across the UK. The company, which currently operates two sites – in Swindon and Worcester – is raising the funds on crowdfunding platform Crowdcube and is offering a 25% equity stake in return for the investment. So far, 176 investors have pledged £150,050 and the campaign is now “overfunding” with ten days remaining. Moody Burgers launched last year after spotting a gap in the market to deliver Californian-inspired burgers. The funds will be used to build sites and invest in marketing activity to help grow its brand and sales a “lot quicker”. The company opened its first site in Swindon in September 2016, followed by the Worcester outlet in March this year. It quickly outgrew its Swindon site and moved to a new 80-cover venue in the Wiltshire town in September that also offers a range of almost 50 cocktails and craft beers. Moody Burgers said that since relocating, deliveries had risen 20%. Moody Burgers has generated sales to date through its website of £200,000 and delivered more than 25,000 burgers. Operations manager Rich Leftwich said: “Our new, larger site in Swindon has added even more income streams and profitability to this business. The growth potential to add new stores is significant and we have a pipeline of potential properties and are ready to go.” Managing director Carl Anderson added: “We’ve been working on the idea for just over a year and we have a strong customer base and an appetite to grow the business. We look forward to having Moody Burgers in more towns and cities across the UK.” Moody Burgers has a menu that features 13 burgers as well as loaded fries, sides, wings and shakes. It has 12,000 customers on its database.

Kanada-Ya confirms third eponymous London restaurant, in Islington: London-based Japanese ramen restaurant Kanada-Ya has confirmed it will open a third site in the capital of its eponymous brand. The company, led by Tony Lam and Aaron Burgess-Smith, is opening the venue in Upper Street, Islington, in March. It will offer the same selection of ramen as its Covent Garden and Soho sites alongside some new additions such as gyoza, an extended sake menu and a small list of cocktails inspired by Japan. The restaurant will have 55 covers over one floor with an open kitchen and will be open for lunch and dinner. Kanada-Ya also operates “homely” Japanese cooking concept Machiya in Soho, which launched in April.

Peel Hotels competes £10m refinancing deal: Peel Hotels has refinanced with almost £10m of funding from Allied Irish Bank (GB). Formed in 1998 by Robert Peel and his brother Charles, Peel Hotels has a turnover of nearly £17m and about 500 employees. The company’s new funding arrangement with Allied Irish Bank (GB) includes a £9.9m five-year term loan facility, which will support the group’s ongoing programme of refurbishments and improvements as well as branch banking services for the hotels. Trish McNicholas, senior relationship manager and a hotel sector specialist at Allied Irish Bank (GB), told The Business Desk: “Research we undertook earlier this year showed that despite economic uncertainty surrounding Brexit the hospitality sector is buoyant, with the UK on course to attract 38 million visitors in 2017 and regional hotels set to hit record occupancy levels. Peel Hotels is therefore well placed to capitalise on those trends.” Peel Hotels started with the Bull Hotel in Peterborough and now operates nine sites across the UK.

Leeds-based Boss Burgers to cease trading: Independent restaurant company Boss Burgers is to cease trading. The company has already closed its restaurant in the Chapel Allerton area of Leeds and will now shut its Hyde Park site in the city on Friday (22 December), Insider Media reports. The company wrote on its Facebook page: “After a fantastic four-and-a-half years the powers that be have decided the time is right to bring the curtain down on Boss Burgers. As of right now, our Chapel Allerton restaurant is closed permanently, with Hyde Park following suit on 22 December. But let us not mourn the death, rather celebrate the life of the little independent that dared to dream. Of queues round the block, epic 100-burger birthday giveaways, and a place in the UK’s top-five burger joints on TripAdvisor.” In October 2016, managing director Adam Kettering rebranded Boss Burgers’ Harrogate site as a pizza concept following an influx of burger chains in the north Yorkshire town. However, that site is now permanently closed too.

London-based baker Bread Ahead to launch Soho cafe next month: London-based baker Bread Ahead is to open a bakery and cafe in Soho next month. The company, which launched in Borough Market and still sells bread from a stall there close to its main bakery, will open a site in Beak Street on Friday, 5 January. Bread Ahead also operates a shop and bakery school in Chelsea, a store in Mayfair and from a stall at the Real Food Market in King’s Cross. The Soho venue will be the brand’s first to offer salads to eat in or take away alongside its more carb-heavy offerings such as doughnuts and breakfast, Hot Dinners reports. The cafe will open from 7am, with morning options such as brioche French toast with bacon and syrup, scrambled eggs with smoked salmon on demi-brioche, and a build-your-own porridge menu featuring cashew butter, quinoa and chia seeds. The bakery will produce sourdough loaves, amaretti, cheese and olive sticks, white tin loaves, focaccia and ciabatta, while there will be a lunchtime sandwich menu. Bread Ahead was founded in 2013 by Matthew Jones and former St John Bakery head baker Justin Gellatly. Its bakery school opened in February 2014.

Freehold of South Bank property home to Pret A Manger and Abokado sells for £266.5m: The freehold of a property on London’s South Bank that is home to Pret A Manger and Abokado has been sold for £266.5m. The Great Ropemaker Partnership, a joint venture between Great Portland Estates and Ropemaker Properties, has exchanged contracts to sell 240 Blackfriars Road to clients of Wolfe Asset Management, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Al Gurg family, which owns the multifaceted business conglomerate Easa Saleh Al Gurg Group in Dubai. The price, marginally ahead of the September book value, reflects a net initial yield of 3.94% and a capital value of £1,176 per square foot. The 200-storey landmark building provides a total of 226,271 square feet of grade A offices and retail accommodation. The sale incorporates Cubitt House, the 10,690 square foot adjoining retail and residential building, where all ten apartments have been sold on long leases and the retail unit is let to The Coffeeworks Project. The total contracted rental income is £11.2m per annum and current weighted unexpired lease term is about 8.4 years to the earlier of expiries or breaks.

Stevie Parle to close Dock Kitchen but vows return in the spring: Stevie Parle is closing his restaurant Dock Kitchen in Ladbroke Grove, London, but is vowing to reopen elsewhere. Parle, who also operates restaurants Rotorino, Craft London and Sardine in the capital, will close Dock Kitchen on Saturday (23 December). In a newsletter sent to the restaurant’s mailing list, Parle stated: “Our lease is coming to an end and unfortunately we have to move out. We’re working on finding a new home for Dock Kitchen or a version of it in the spring. In the meantime, all the team will be working at one of our other restaurants.” In October, Parle launched pasta restaurant Pastaio in Carnaby for what was his fifth site. The venue was designed by Tom Dixon Studios, which has been involved in all of Parle’s restaurants. Parle launched Dock Kitchen eight years ago, originally as a pop-up, in the same building as the Tom Dixon Shop. Dixon is in the process of moving his showroom from Ladbroke Grove to King’s Cross. Parle told Hot Dinners: “The collaboration with Tom at Tom Dixon is one I’m incredibly proud of and one I hope to continue for years into the future.”

All Our Bars to phase out single-use plastic across estate: All Our Bars, led by Paul Wigham, has committed to phasing out single-use plastics by the end of January in support of the UN Clean Seas campaign. The Kent-headquartered company, which operates 18 sites in London and the south east, will ban straws, cocktail stirrers and single-use plastic cutlery and glasses across its estate. The products will be replaced by biodegradable substitutes or reusable alternatives. Wigham said: “This initiative forms part of our ongoing commitment to reducing our impact on the environment – we know that making even small changes can make a dramatic difference. We will also be asking brand owners and suppliers to identify where they are using single-use plastics in their supply with a view to switching products where necessary. Food supply packaging may be the biggest challenge but unless we try to make change, nothing can happen.” This month, Starbucks committed to signing up its entire UK estate by early 2018 to the Refill app, in which hospitality businesses are encouraged to let the public refill water bottles for free rather than buying new ones. Other hospitality companies to ban plastic straws from their estate include Redcomb Pubs, Oakman Inns and Restaurants, JD Wetherspoon, Be At One, The Alchemist, Laine Pub Company and Liberation Group.

Papa John’s franchisees open second Plymouth site: Plymouth-based Papa John’s franchisees Jo and Austin Boland have opened their second site in the Devon city. The Bolands have opened the store in St Budeaux having taken over a former KFC outlet. Jo Boland said: “It is well placed for our staff to deliver to new customers in Saltash, across the bridge into Cornwall. It’s early days but already sales for the new store are looking good. Most of our orders are for home delivery.” Papa John’s, which was founded in the US in 1984, has more than 350 sites across the UK and more than 5,000 stores in 40-plus international markets and territories.

East Midlands entrepreneurs to transform Nottingham property into luxury restaurant and events venue: A group of East Midlands entrepreneurs, led by hospitality and leisure consultant David Waycot, have acquired the Lakeside in Nottingham, with the objective of creating a five-star luxury venue. The grade II-listed former Victorian pumping station is undergoing a multimillion-pound refurbishment programme, with phase one expected to be completed and ready for opening in the spring. Phase one will feature an 80-seater restaurant and champagne and cocktail bar, along with alfresco lakeside dining. In addition the Tower Banqueting Suite will seat up to 80 guests and be licensed for civil ceremonies and weddings. The kitchen team will be of a “Michelin-star pedigree” and source local, seasonal ingredients for its menu of international and British cuisine.

Stephen Crawley back in brewing as he launches Liverpool development: Former Caledonian managing director Stephen Crawley, who resurrected renowned brewer Higsons, is back in brewing having launched a new brewery, distillery and retail space in his home town of Liverpool. The multimillion-pound investment has seen a run-down warehouse in the Baltic Triangle area transformed into H1780 Tap & Still, reviving the Higsons and Love Lane brands. The beers, synonymous with Liverpool for more than 200 years, have been on Crawley’s radar for some time. Last year, he acquired the Higsons brand and at the same time purchased the Liverpool Craft Beer Company, makers of Love Lane beer at the Bridgewater site. H1780 Tap & Still comprises a brewery, distillery, three bars, a kitchen and events space. Crawley told BDaily: “The distillery is right next to the bar so our guests will be intimately involved in the making of our beer and gin and can also enjoy great food cooked from fresh.” The H in H1780 is for Higson’s, with 1780 the year it was first brewed. H1780 Tap & Still operations manager and retail director Paul Seiffert, who co-founded Liverpool Craft Beer Company, said: “We want Tap & Still to be at the centre of Liverpool’s food and drink offer.”

Former Hakkasan Group general manager launches all-day cafe concept in Islington: Former Hakkasan Group general manager Mark Wood has launched all-day cafe concept St Paul in Islington, north London. The venture has opened in St Paul’s Road at a site formerly occupied by Nanna’s cafe. It offers small plates, coffee and snacks throughout the day, with craft beer and a short wine list in the evening. Charcuterie, cheese plates, soup, stew and grilled sandwiches are also available, Hot Dinners reports. While at Hakkasan Group, Wood oversaw the launch of dim sum teahouse brand Yauatcha. He was also director of operations at Food International in Saudi Arabia.

Former St John Bread and Wine chef launches Irish bar restaurant concept in east London: Niall Davidson, former chef of London restaurants Chiltern Firehouse and St John Bread and Wine, has launched an Irish bar restaurant concept for his debut solo venture. Davidson has opened Nuala in City Road, close to Old Street, with menus influenced by his Scottish and Northern Irish heritage. The kitchen is led by former Fat Duck chef Colin McSherry, with dishes in the 75-cover restaurant cooked over a wood fire, including potted smokie, scampi-fried quail eggs, and coffee ham with Irish condiments. The decor features pictures from the original Guinness archives and a large mahogany bar, while the basement bar features live music.

Asset management company acquires second hotel in £12.5m deal: Asset management company Bowling Green has acquired its second branded hotel of 2017 after buying the Holiday Inn Stonehenge, near Amesbury, Wiltshire, for £12.5m. The deal for the 103-bedroom hotel reflected a net initial yield of 9.25%. The company acquired the property from Fiesta Enterprises through agents Colliers International. The hotel, which is six miles from Stonehenge, has been recently refurbished and features an on-site Solstice Bar and Grill. Bowling Green will retain the current senior management team as well as all employees. Director Jamie Levy said: “This hotel has been a target of ours for some time, so we are pleased to complete the purchase. The hotel has been run on a sound footing previously and we have no intention of upsetting the applecart. Many of the staff have been with the hotel for a number of years and we hope they remain with us for the foreseeable future. We will look to expand the hotel offerings, along with continuing the hunt for potential acquisitions.”

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